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Kamloops councillor wants state of city event to explain city’s role in myriad issues

Bill Sarai said council has been inundated with concerns regarding numerous issues not within its jurisdiction, suggesting a meeting could clarify government roles
Kamloops RCMP Acadian Inn
Kamloops RCMP at the Acadian Inn on Oct. 4, 2021. The arrest of a robbery suspect was one of numerous police incidents in the city last year.

A Kamloops city councillor wants the city to host a state of the city event to address concerns of residents and business owners.

Coun. Bill Sarai broached the topic on Tuesday, Jan. 11, during a council meeting.

“Whether it’s crime, homelessness, mental health and addiction, individuals that are struggling on our streets,” Sarai said, “there’s a lot of misconception out there that the city is not doing enough on certain areas of these issues and we need to be clear and share what our limitations are and what our struggles are with the different levels of governments and what, as a municipality, we can do and what we have been doing.”

Sarai said council has been inundated with concerns regarding numerous issues not within its jurisdiction, suggesting engagement would “go a long ways” in clearing up misunderstandings and concerns.

Sarai said that when he speaks with individuals, they often walk away with a better understanding of various situations something he would like to see on a larger scale.

Sarai touched on the topic in the January View From City Hall column.

Mayor Ken Christian said Kamloops RCMP previously met with business improvement associations, adding such meetings could extend to neighbourhood associations. Christian said the issue could be tackled by the city’s community services committee, but noted public meetings are limited right now during the COVID-19 pandemic.